Oh boy, George: The New York Post's Page Six may finally have a plausible explanation for the series of events leading up to Boy George's drug arrest last weekend. Its scenario goes something like this: George hired a male hustler, who then demanded all the money in the house. "George said no and that he was going to call the police," a source tells the paper. "The prostitute said, 'Go ahead and you'll go to jail.' So George freaked out because he was high, called the police, the prostitute left, and George got arrested." Doesn't really explain where the 13 bags of cocaine came from, though. (Page Six)
Adios, amigos: It's not a risky bet, but our money's on a shotgun wedding for Tom and Katie, and it looks like the resort of Cancun is going to get to play host to the hasty nuptials, probably sometime before December. A source tells the Daily Mirror's 3am Girls: "Tom's old-fashioned. He wants his child to be born in wedlock. He's very romantic and wants everything to be in place before the birth." He also wants the entire Ritz-Carlton to himself, apparently. "It's turning into a total nightmare," the source continues. "Tom is insisting on having the entire hotel for the weekend. He's not taking any chances and wants their day to be ultra-private. But a hotel like the Ritz- Carlton fills up months in advance and trying to sort out changing people's reservations is a logistical nightmare." (3am Girls)
Coaching the troops: By now, you've no doubt heard that the president's "informal discussion" with troops in Iraq via satellite was actually a carefully staged media event, but if you'd like to listen to the actual preparation that went into it, NPR has the audio here (Real Audio, 4:26). Money quote: "If he gives us a question that's not something that we've scripted, Captain Kennedy, you're gonna have that mic, and that's your chance to impress us all." (NPR via Crooks and Liars)
A very happy celebrity birthday: If you've ever wondered how to send your favorite star a birthday greeting, an overzealous reply at Google Answers tells you everything you need to know (except for the actual dates), with addresses for everyone from Aerosmith to Paula Zahn. One odd aside: "In addition, there may be a few defunct entities or deceased celebrities mentioned here too. The reason for this is because, even though celebrities die or go out of business, their families or business associates often maintain some contact with the public because of the continued public interest in their work." If the whole card-sending process seems too difficult, the kind people over at PresidentialPrayerTeam.com have set up a simple form for sending good wishes to First Lady Laura Bush, whose birthday is Nov. 4. Some suggestions: Use lots of exclamation points, mention how "cool" she is. (Google Answers, Presidential Prayer Team via Metafilter)
Poor Roy: The tiger mauling that left him near dead may not have been quite as bad as the treatment he allegedly suffered at the hands of Siegfried. A lawsuit brought against Siegfried by one of Roy's former bodyguards for unfair termination also includes loads of nasty details about how Siegfried treated his partner after the accident, apparently forcing medication on the debilitated Roy, who lived in abject fear and once even requested a knife for self-protection. Siegfried's lawyer calls the claims "totally false" ... Mayim Bialik, better known to the world as Blossom -- and who's been popping up in shows like "Fat Actress" and "Curb Your Enthusiasm" -- gave birth to a baby boy on Tuesday with husband Michael Stone. It's their first child ... They seem an odd match, somehow, but rumor has it that Al Pacino and Kirstie Alley are an item. The nightmare-inducing quote from Star magazine: "They were huddled for the whole evening at the Chateau Marmont, and, at one point, Kirstie was stroking his thigh as she talked to him" ... Hot on the heels of "The Exorcism of Emily Rose," casting out spirits is apparently all the rage -- but the church warns people to please leave exorcism to the experts. Italian exorcist Andrea Gemma, currently lecturing at an exorcism course at Rome's Pontifical Regina Apostolorum University, says, "Don't do this at home." Pope Benedict XVI, meeting with Italian exorcists last month, exhorted them to "continue your important mission in the service of the Church" ... He's nearing 60, but Sylvester Stallone has signed on for (at least) one more turn as Rocky, a sixth incarnation of the boxer in which "a lonely, poverty-stricken Balboa comes out of retirement and looks to keep his hand in with a few low-profile fights." Sounds almost as enticing as "Rambo IV," now in production, which will deal with (surprise!) Rambo taking on terrorists.
Salman Rushdie on his fears about an upset Almighty: "I've been worrying about God a little bit lately. It seems as if he's been lashing out, you know, destroying cities, annihilating places. It seems like he's been in a bad mood. And I think it has to do with the quality of lovers he's been getting. If you look at the people who love God now, you know, if I was God, I'd need to destroy something." ("Real Time With Bill Maher" via Page Six)
Helena Bonham Carter, who appears as the voice of Lady T in "Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Wererabbit," on the abiding success of the man-dog animated couple in Britain: "My mother always said to get the British to talk to you, you have to have a dog or be into gardening, and she was right." (The Awful Truth)
Comedy Central begins a three-night countdown of the 25 best Cartman episodes on "South Park" (Comedy Central, 9 p.m. EDT), plus if you can't get enough of George Clooney, he's on "Charlie Rose" (PBS, check local listings). Also: On Saturday, it's the season premiere of the series "Off to War," documenting the tour of duty for the 239th Engineer Company of the Arkansas National Guard (Discovery Times, 10 p.m. EDT). And HBO airs "Sideways" at 8 p.m. EDT.
-- Scott Lamb